How Healthcare Professionals are using Medical Device Instructions (IFU)

We conducted a survey amongst healthcare professionals with the objective to better understand how printed Instructions for Use (IFU) delivered together with the medical devices are used.

More than 120 healthcare professionals responded. While the survey results show that IFUs are not needed in most application cases they also clearly indicated that IFU access is considered essential by the nurses and physicians.

The survey was directed at professionals working in hospitals and private practices. Respondents have orthopaedic, cardiology, urology, dentistry, OR, intensive and general care backgrounds. All groups use various medical devices in their daily work.

One central question of the survey was how often healthcare professionals need access to the IFUs of the medical devices they use. The objective of this question was to investigate the actual utilisation of printed IFUs in clinical praxis.

The majority of the respondents said that they need device instructions for the first application of the medical device or when there are problems.

The results show that healthcare professionals do not need the IFU in more than 90% of medical device applications. However, access to the instructions is considered essential when there are problems.

These results indicate that digital instructions with convenient and unambiguous access to IFU could better meet user needs than printed instructions supplied with each product.

With this data, we can now ask the question: Is there a better way to communicate instructions than shipping them with every product?

In our next digital instruction blog we will discuss the results of our survey on medical device user acceptance of digital instructions.

Please contact us for further expertise on digital instructions for medical devices.

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